An Atomic Moo Book Review of Gary John Bishop’s Stoic Self-help Book.
I don’t like my life. I know that may read as petulant or selfish, and I am well aware that life could be far worse, but it still doesn’t change the fact that most nights I go to bed with a gnawing sense of loss and depression that I can’t shake. Then, early this year, I got tired of feeling like that and decided to start making some changes. I dropped about thirty pounds, I started to save money, pay down debt, and figure out what it is I want to do with what life I have left. So, I guess I should say, “I didn’t like my life,” because things are getting better. At least a little.
I feel like I owe some of this improvement to stoic philosophy. Okay, to be honest; as much stoicism as I can get from youtube videos and the odd book, but part of my pursuit of a more meaningful life through stoicism somehow lead me to a book by Gary John Bishop titled Unfuck Yourself. This a little no-nonsense guide to changing the narrative in your head to something more positive and useful, that is also incredibly engaging. Here’s the synopsis (well, I think this is the synopsis…):
Are you tired of feeling fu*ked up? If you are, Gary John Bishop has the answer. In this straightforward handbook, he gives you the tools and advice you need to demolish the slag weighing you down and become the truly unfu*ked version of yourself. ”Wake up to the miracle you are,” he directs. ”Here’s what you’ve forgotten: You’re a fu*king miracle of being.” It isn’t other people that are standing in your way, it isn’t even your circumstances that are blocking your ability to thrive, it’s yourself and the negative self-talk you keep telling yourself.
I think this is one of the best books for laying down a practical plan for effecting a positive change in an otherwise shitty life. In Unfuck Yourself, Bishop, motivates readers to change a bad narrative (what we tell ourselves) to something that includes assertions like, “I got this” and “I am relentless.” This isn’t just positive affirmation. Well it is that too, but also a very frank advice on how to really be relentless and succeed. Best quote of the book is (for me), “Stop doing all the shit you know you shouldn’t be doing, and start doing all the shit you know you should be doing.” Which Bishop backs up in his own blunt way.
Also, much of the book falls in line with some of the stoic stuff I’ve been listening to online, and it is even full of quotes from the likes of Marcus Aurelius. It only took me about a day and half to read Unfuck Yourself, so I’ll probably be giving it a second (third) read again soon, to help re-enforce some of the ideas, and I highly recommend it to anyone feeling like they need a positive kick in the ass.